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Panel approves hiring reform, expands whistleblower protections

July 29, 2009 A Senate panel on Wednesday approved by voice vote legislation to overhaul federal hiring procedures and extend whistleblower protection to intelligence community employees. The 2009 Federal Hiring Process Improvement Act, sponsored by Sens. George Voinovich, R-Ohio, and Daniel Akaka, D-Hawaii, passed the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee without...

FEMA’s fuzzy chain of command impedes its mission, observers say

July 28, 2009 The Federal Emergency Management Agency needs a clearer chain of command and more efficient partnerships with state and local governments in disaster relief situations, witnesses told a House panel on Monday. "We need not be confined to outdated systems and approaches to disaster response and recovery," said David Maxwell, vice...

Workforce challenges linger at Federal Air Marshal Service

July 23, 2009 The Federal Air Marshal Service has taken steps to address workforce challenges, but still has room for improvement, witnesses told a House panel on Thursday. During a hearing before the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Management, Investigations and Oversight, FAMS Director Robert Bray told lawmakers the agency has addressed personnel...

State Department launches quadrennial review

July 15, 2009 The State Department is launching a comprehensive quadrennial review of its operations and resources, modeled on similar assessments at the Defense and Homeland Security departments. The review, led by Deputy Secretary for Management and Resources Jack Lew, begins immediately, and the department plans to publish the report in early 2010....

Private sector not necessarily a model for hiring reform

July 13, 2009 Private sector strategies might not be the answer to federal hiring reform, according to a report from a management consulting firm. For instance, eliminating knowledge, skills and abilities essays on federal job applications and focusing on résumés could backfire, the report by Avue Technologies Corp. stated. Office of Personnel Management...

Senate committee endorses 2.9 percent federal pay raise

July 9, 2009 The Senate Appropriations Committee on Thursday approved a 2.9 percent pay increase for federal civilian employees in fiscal 2010, a bigger raise than that approved by the House spending panel earlier this week. Sen. Richard Durbin, D-Ill., chairman of the Senate Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Subcommittee, advanced the...

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